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Dehydration in infants: Signs, Causes, and Treatment

 

In this winter, your baby has a high chance of catching a cold or a virus. This might lead to diarrhea and vomiting, due to which the baby will lose the body liquids and will be dehydrated. In very rare cases, excessive sweating and excessive urination will result in dehydration. Infants and young kids are more prone to dehydration since they lose the body liquids faster when compared to the adults.

Now let us take a deeper look at the signs, causes and the treatments of dehydration in infants.

What are the causes of dehydration:

1. Dehydration is mainly caused by fever, diarrhea, and vomiting, which are the result of viral and bacterial infection.

2. Excessive urination due to undiagnosed diabetes.

3. Excessive sweating as a result of hot weather or hot environment.

4. Sore throats and sore mouth which may prevent the children from drinking liquids.

Diarrhea is the most common cause of dehydration, since, the baby loses the body fluids quickly. It is difficult to restore the lost nutrients, especially, if the condition prevails for more than two days.

The situation might get complicated, if, diarrhea is accompanied by other symptoms like vomiting, where the body fluids will drain faster.

What are the symptoms of dehydration:

The following signs indicate that your baby is experiencing dehydration.

1. Six hours of sleep without wetting the diaper or without urinating.

2. ‎Urine looks darker than usual and smells stronger.

3. ‎Dry mouth and lips.

4. ‎No tears while crying.

5. ‎Babies being less active than usual.

 

 

If the condition prolongs for a longer period, the baby will be severely dehydrated. The following are the signs of severe dehydration.

1. Sunken eyes.

2. ‎Excessive sleep.

3. Bloody stools.

4. ‎Pain in the abdomen.

5. ‎Continuous vomiting for 24 hours or vomit is in green color.

6. ‎High fever, more than 103°F

7. Increased heartbeat.

8. Pale skin.

Treatments for dehydration:
Home remedies for dehydration:

The best treatment for dehydration is, restoring the fluids that the baby has lost due to diarrhea and vomiting.

1. One of the methods of treating moderate dehydration is Oral Rehydration, where, fluids that will restore the lost sugar and electrolytes are given to the children.

2. In case of breastfed babies, the session can be reduced. If the baby continues to vomit, adopt oral rehydration, where the fluids can be given through either spoon or syringe.

3. In case of bottle-fed infants, oral rehydration can be given, when the child has vomited for more than two times.

4. For children above one year, little quantities of clear fluid can be given for 8 hours.

5. Avoid solid foods for 24 hours.

Medical treatments for dehydration:

1. In case of a mild dehydration, oral rehydration is suggested by the doctors. 

2. In case of a moderate dehydration, the child is rehydrated by administering the fluids through a tube, that is placed in the vein.

3. In case of a severe dehydration, the baby will be admitted to the hospital and kept under constant observation, while rehydrating using the tube.

Ways to prevent dehydration in children:

1. Keep an eye on the children and look for the signs of infection.

2. If you sense the early symptoms of dehydration, start rehydrating your children.

3. If you feel doubtful, don't hesitate to call your baby's doctor.  

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